1. Know your role. Wrestlers wrestle. Coaches coach. Officials officiate. Parents parents. And there should be very little, if any, overlap between them.
2. Verbally & Non-verbally communicate that you believe in them. According to many successful wrestlers, their parents tell them they could do anything dozens of times every day!
3. Verbally & Non-verbally communicate that you accept them, love them, and are proud of them NO MATTER WHAT. Reinforce winning, perfection, & success are much lower on your priority list than their fun, happiness, & enjoyment-you might be surprised how much more success this brings with it.
4. Praise their performance, not their outcome.
5. Ask your kid permission before giving your opinion/criticism. Would you mind my opinion… (This gives the kid a sense of power during a sensitive interaction)
6. Be Positive & Supportive. 9 out of 10 times, this is what your kid would like.
7. Don’t always talk about wrestling too much at home. Let your kid bring it up first most of the time. Let your home be a place of peace, positivity, & mental recovery.
8. Most people, no matter how old they are, want to make their parents proud. People are keenly aware of their parent’s judgements & opinions of their parents more than anymore else. Even the highest level wrestlers I have worked with are sensitive to the verbal & non-verbal praise and critique of their parents. Know this- “you have the power to help them or hurt them more than anymore else in the world.